Giveaway and Review: "Changeling" by Philippa Gregory

"Changeling" The Order of Darkness #1
 by Philippa Gregory

Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: Jan 1, 2012 (paperback)
Source: sent by publicist

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Summary from

Dark myths, medieval secrets, intrigue, and romance populate the pages of this first in a four-book teen series from the #1 bestselling author of The Other Boleyn Girl.The year is 1453 and all signs point to it being the end of the world. Accused of heresy and expelled from his monastery, handsome seventeen-year-old Luca Vero is recruited by a mysterious stranger to record the end of times across Europe. Commanded by sealed orders, Luca is sent to map the fears of Christendom and travel to the very frontier of good and evil.

Seventeen-year-old Isolde, a Lady Abbess, is trapped in a nunnery to prevent her from claiming her rich inheritance. As the nuns in her care are driven mad by strange visions, walking in their sleep, and showing bleeding wounds, Luca is sent to investigate and driven to accuse her.

Forced to face the greatest fears of the dark ages—witchcraft, werewolves, madness—Luca and Isolde embark on a search for truth, their own destinies, and even love as they take the unknown ways to the real historical figure who defends the boundaries of Christendom and holds the secrets of the Order of Darkness.

My Review:

This was a very unique book, and I enjoyed it a lot! I was pleasantly surprised by just how different of a story it was.

The characters were great and I can't wait to see them develop even more in the next books. My favorite character was Freize, Luca's servant. He was so funny, and had a heart of gold. I can only hope that he and Ishraq will patch things up in the upcoming books. Ishraq, Isolde's servant, was a very interesting character, too. She was wise and strong, in a quiet way. I liked Isolde, too, she was strong in her own right, especially considering everything that had happened to her to put her in her present circumstances. Luca has some growing to do, but his heart is in the right place. He's a bit over-confident, but it works for him, and he has good values.

I have to say that I enjoyed the second part of the book more than the first. The characters were definitely on two clearly separate adventures. The second adventure had a little bit more heart in my opinion. Also, I think I was more aware of where the characters stood in their points of view and values, instead of guessing. I love the format of the four characters heading off on different adventures in every book. I can't wait for the upcoming books in the series.

Main Characters: 4/5
Supporting Characters: 5/5

Setting: 5/5

Romance: 4/5

Uniqueness: 5/5
Cover: 5/5
Writing: 5/5

Bottom Line: A wonderful and unique take on YA, I can't wait to read the future installments of this new series.

You may be more familiar with the cover for the hardcover version of this book. I would say that, while I might have been more likely to pick up the first cover, I really think this new cover suits the story better.

Visit the Official Site
Watch the Book Trailer

Philippa Gregory is the author of several internationally bestselling novels, including The Other Boleyn Girl and The White Queen, and is a recognized authority on women’s history. She lives in the north of England with her family and welcomes visitors to her website, Order of Darkness: Changeling is her first novel written for teens.

Find out more:


Is then pen mightier than the sword?
One winner receives:
·         Copy of Order of Darkness: Changeling
·         Victorian Rose Glass Pen Set

The publicist has generously provided a copy of "Changeling" The Order of Darkness #1, along with a calligraphy pen for a lucky follower of my blog!
All you have to do is follow my blog publicly and fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Please follow publicly or I can't tell that you are following :)
  • US only
  • Must be a follower to enter
  • Books will be mailed out by the publisher
  • Must be 18 or over 
  • Ends Feb 20
Thanks to everyone for entering! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I love character development so this sounds up my alley. Lovely review.
    Happy reading,
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  2. Great giveaway. Thanks!


  3. I do wanna try this YA series by her

  4. Wow, high ratings for this one! This got a lot of buzz because of the author, I'm glad it lived up to your expectations.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  5. I'm excited for this! My sister introduced me to Philippa's books.

  6. love philippa gregory! good luck everyone! (i;m not in the US, sadly!)

  7. thanks for the great review and giveaway! This book soudns awesome!

  8. Sounds like a great book-- thats why it got such great ratings-- love to read this one too

  9. I love that first cover - it's so striking but then when i saw the second one I loved it more. I think it tells me more about the story and makes me want to read it.

    thanks for the giveaway Carrie :-)

  10. I've been seeing this everywhere! Since you have such great taste in books I'm sure I'll like this too. Thanks so much for the great review and giveaway.

    Renee C.

  11. I've enjoyed Philippa Gregory's historical fiction and I'm excited that she's written a YA tale that includes paranormal elements.

    I don't quite understand the format, but I guess that's a good reason to read the book!

  12. I saw a really positive review of this book that has made me more interested in reading it. I like the new cover too! I've enjoyed Philippa Gregory's historical fiction in the past but was worried about the addition of paranormal/fantasy elements but according to the review I read, it is more historical fiction and less of the other which makes me want to read it more.

  13. i've been wanting to read Changeling since i heard about it!!
    thank you for the giveaway!!

  14. It sounds like a great strong woman book!

  15. Fantastic review! Freize was my favorite character too. He was so witty and hilarious- loved him! I also think Ishraq was a pretty cool character too- I hope we learn more about her in book two.

  16. I have to say, I prefer the original cover, too. I'm all for non-modeled covers, but the new one looks kind Not necessarily the best look to go for. I've been interested in it for a while, though, and paranormal historical is very enjoyable if done well (though I can't imagine it's anywhere near the greatness of something like the Gemma Doyle trilogy). Thanks for the great review and giveaway. :)

  17. oh how i love fiction with a historical setting...

  18. I read this book last year and thought it was pretty okay. I'd love to win a copy of it with its new cover! Thank you so much for the very cool giveaway :D

  19. Sounds like a great book. I like that they are on different adventures.

  20. Definitely interested - I love P. Gregory's other books - particularly anything to do with the Tudors - I've enjoyed most of her books!

  21. I love her stuff, but I've never read this one!

  22. Oh I've been wanting to read this book! perfect!

  23. This sounds like a really good book!

  24. I loved The Other Boleyn Girl, but I'm more of a YA girl, and the plot sounds really intriguing. :)

  25. This looks very interesting - I'm curious to see how she handles YA fiction.

  26. i love phillipa gregory and am glad to know she developed another great book!

  27. This sounds like a great read. Thanks for the giveaway.

  28. I love Philippa's books. I can't wait to read this one too!

  29. I like philippa gregory and I loved the review.

  30. I love reading books that are reviewed by bloggers. Especially books that receive a high rating. I hope I win this prize so that I can read it and the pass it along to someone else. Thank you for the review.

  31. i love stories set in medieval times
    trixie420247 at yahoo dot com

  32. I like new YA books, and especially ones that are unique! The story line sounds great :)

  33. This looks like an awesome book! I love England and I loved the trailer!

  34. TheSavySue(at)yahoo(dot)com This book sounds awsome, I love Philippa Gregory book's!

  35. I really like that you gave each of the categories ratings. It definitely makes me want to read it!

  36. Sounds like a very good book, though I kinda like the first cover better!

  37. I've been looking for a good novel for my teen to read. We read together in home school and this sounds fascinating!


Thanks so much for your lovely comments!